Carlo Ferro: Let's Switch the Engines Back On

Carlo Ferro, President of the ICE Agency, outlines the jewelry industry’s pre and post-Covid figures and trends together with strategies to speed up recovery


«After having racked up 10 consecutive years of growth and a relatively brilliant 2019, with a +2.3% increase in goods sold abroad, in January and February we had reached +4.7%, even while China was already being affected by the pandemic. Now, Istat numbers at the end of May indicate a downturn of -16% in the first 5 months of 2020 compared to 2019, but they also highlight a good +35% in May compared to April. It is therefore hoped that the coming months continue in this direction with a U-shaped growth curve and progressive recovery. Between February and April, jewelry touched the, I would say, “historic” figure of a tendential -31.5% within a global export outlook of -37.8%. In short, it is a sector that has been hit more than others, especially considering that, in 2019, it alone was worth 7 billion in exports thanks to the excellence that our gold districts have always been able to express. VOICE is the first event that will see us gathered together: we parted in January at Vicenzaoro after an edition that, thanks to ICE-Agenzia, had boasted the participation of 200 specialist visitors and the launching of the Startup and Carats project focused on innovation and technology. Forecasts tell us that, in order for the Italian fashion system to return to a positive trend, we will have to wait until 2022 but, in the meanwhile, let’s get on with an optimistic start. The export Pact that Minister Di Maio petitioned so strongly for, shows reaction and vision in support of businesses. And ICE is heavily committed to speeding up the action to assist four main pillars: advertising campaigns to promote the Italy brand, e-commerce, the Smart 365 Trade Show and digital export manager training. We also have new and very important initiatives for the jewelry industry, such as advertising campaigns in the USA and China and a stand for the Made in Italy sector organized by ICE and Federorafi at the CIIE scheduled for next November.»

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